Promoting communication

FOODY app design


I started this capstone project topic because of my trip back to China last year. I saw a food deliver rider sleeping on the stairs of a subway station entrance. He was actually waiting for a order outside a restaurant. I had heard something about them that they work very hard but actually make little money to afford them in a big city. If customers ordered food in bad weathers, they have to work though that.

And I consistently see the news on internet or hashtag topic on social media, the riders were not being treated fairly. If anything goes wrong with the order, customers place blame for the entire experience on the delivery rider. I was touched by what I saw and I really want to do something for him.

As I started doing my research, I found out they are actually suffering from different

aspects. They have a messy working management, an unorganized working schedule and a bad working environment.

Even though, they are not being treated nicely by the customers. If orders arrived late, some of them got mad and they blame all the faults on the riders without knowing what is really going on.

But I want to be practical, I want to know what I can do for them as a visual communication designer. So I narrow down my research to why customers have been treating riders badly. Even if  they think they can understand riders are suffering, they still lose the temper if the food arrived later than it was promised. 

I think something is missing in the process of the communication with customers and riders. With my research, I figure it is their emotions. Words on the phone can only convey the meaning of the words itself. When people talking face to face, the message we communicate is not only words but also our body language, appearance and tone. All these things together is our message. But when we comminute on the phone, the phone is working like a filter. It filters out all the other ingredients and leaves only words. That’s why customers’ emotions get lost on phone app communication.

This communication issue is one that that all people are having. Again, it seems too big for a capstone project, so I decided to make it work for the food deliver rider in China in this case. Hopefully,  it could help them build better emotion with the customers which means they could have a better working experience.

Then I made my research on emotional design and visual communication. It turned out that every time it comes to visuals, communication will improve. This gave me the idea of combing food order app with dating app. Because on dating app, people are willing to build emotion connection with others. They upload their photos, using different kinds of stickers to make others like them.

So I made a phone app called foody. It is a combination of common food order app and dating app. When a rider finishes an order, customers can like this rider or do

nothing. Same thing for the rider,  they have the right to like this customer or do nothing. If they both like each other, they will be a match and customers could have the access to use his favorite rider deliver the food next time. I hope this could help the riders build emotion with customers so that they can, at least, enjoy their work a little bit.



On my exhibit, I want people can focus on the communication issue that I found. I made a wood track with two pieces on that can slide to simulate the process of communication. The two pieces are emotion and word which consist of our message. When people try to slide them, the big piece emotion will be stopped by the phone which indicates how phone block our emotion when we are texting or emailing.

Another panel is a voting which can help people figure out that a smiling dog face works much stronger than just words happy dog. Because when it comes more visual, more emotion you can feel. Hopefully, people can feel the message that I was trying to convey.